Emil Ganso (German and American, 1895–1941) was born in Halberstadt, Germany but moved to the United States in his teens. Ganso worked as a baker to support himself and took evening classes at the National Academy's School of Fine Art. The gallerist Erhard Weyhe recognized Ganso's talent and offered him funds to attend a residency in Woodstock, New York in 1926. There, the artist worked with Leonard Bocour to develop pigments and formulas for acrylic paint, which launched Bocour Artists Colors, a pioneering American paint brand.
Throughout the 30s, Ganso exhibited at museums and galleries across the United States. He received a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1933, which he used to study and paint in Europe. He also exhibited at both the 1939 New York World's Fair and the Golden Gate Exposition in San Francisco the same year. Ganso kept a studio at 54th West 74th Street, a historic shared artist's building. He eventually resided in Iowa where he taught art at the University of Iowa.
Ganso is known for his ability to depict intense and dramatic depth and tone in his prints and paintings. His work focuses primarily on rural and city landscapes and the female figure. Emil Ganso's work can be found in major museums and international collections.